This reverie on 12 masterpieces from Berlin's celebrated Staatliche Museen unites the art of the past with the questions of the present.
Berlin's Gemäldegalerie is known for its outstanding collection of European paintings from the 13th to 18th centuries. Each of the 12 chapters in this book is dedicated to one painting from the collection. In the breadth of this selection, painting is seen, as it discovers itself and becomes a medium for the formulation of modern subjectivity. Each painting in focus unfolds its own emergence and concrete pursuits as they also reflect something of today's concerns. What are the paradoxes within which art is made by women? How does the primordial drive to destroy works of art affect today's art discourse? Where did the modern struggle of painting against the picture begin? Why does the Wild Man from early German Renaissance still haunt us? And why doesn't it matter whether JanVermeer used an optical device for his paintings? Twelve Paintings is a hymn to the contemporaneousness of Old Masters.Tal Sterngast (born 1972) studied photography and film in Jerusalem, London and Berlin. She has published numerous essays and articles about contemporary art and film in international newspapers and art magazines. She has organized several exhibitions. This book is based on the article series "Alte Meister," published in the weekend supplement of die Tageszeitung between 2017 and 2019.